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Find & Recode: turning the mundane to magic for bookkeepers

Posted 6 years ago in Advisors by Aaron Palardy
Posted by Aaron Palardy

At Xero we love bookkeepers (and I happen to be one!). Anyone who has worked in the industry knows what it’s like to open a client’s file and see pages of things begging to be fixed. It’s a grind. As small business owners ourselves, we are always looking for ways to be more efficient.

Until today, you could only make edits to one transaction at a time in Xero. However, with Find & Recode for advisers, up to 2000 line items can be updated at once. Accounts, tax rates, tracking and contacts can be easily updated on both paid and unpaid transactions.

Where you may have spent hours previously, it now takes only seconds to get things right. Xero does the work for you!

This changes the economics of bookkeeping. Cleaning up accounts in Xero is now done at lightspeed.

There are two parts to Find & Recode, the ‘finding’ and the ‘recoding’.

Step 1: Find

Have you ever wanted to:

  • filter for all line items associated with a specific account and tax rate?
  • ensure that all spent items over a specific amount threshold are correctly coded to asset accounts?
  • check the accuracy of items entered by the overly enthusiastic new intern?
  • clean up contacts that have been entered in a sloppy fashion? Perhaps: N Gallagher, Noel G, Oasis LLC are all the same contact and need some tidying?
  • drill down to line items that have had tracking accidentally left off them?
  • or some other simple or not-so-simple selection of line items?

Well, now you can. A full set of search conditions is included so you can easily find exactly the line items you’re after. These conditions include: date, contact, account, tax rate, user who entered the transaction, tracking and more:

Find transaction lines that match

All search results are linked to the source transaction; making it easy to review the details of what needs changing:

Review details

Step 2: Recode

Now that you have the line items you’re looking for the real excitement begins! You have a choice between two options for how you deal with the big tidy up.

  1. If you’re concerned with the integrity of the source data; you can choose to recode changes directly on the original line items
  2. If you’re preparing end of period reports and just want the reporting balances corrected; you can recode using a manual journal. Xero will calculate the adjustments needed and pre-populate the journal for you.
Recode transactions

Voila! What may have previously taken hours is now done in seconds.

We’ve done everything we can to make your experience super smooth on the surface. However, this is a powerful tool, so you need to know what you’re doing. Before cracking into your first Find & Recode, please read the guide in Xero Help.

This is yet another tool we’re providing to bookkeepers that creates further efficiencies in their business and allows us to continue forward with best practice bookkeeping at a transactional level. A clean and tidy ledger is a great platform to produce management reporting which is vital information to a small business owner in decision making, and it keeps our accountant’s happy, after all, it is all about collaboration to achieve the best result for the client.

Bookkeepers love Find & Recode

But, let’s hear it from the ground, this is what some of our super-star bookkeepers across the globe have to say about Find & Recode.

Lisa Martin, Go Fi8ure Bookkeeping (NZ)

“With best practice bookkeeping and our training program, keeping a tidy ledger with data integrity for management reporting is our number one priority and a GIVEN so we continue to be a chartered accountants dream! All too often we have to answer an SOS call from a client with no training and an abused ledger where all you want to do is remove and redo everything and start fresh.

“Find and recode is a bookkeepers saviour from hours of TLC fixing codes one by one and crying at the injustice of ledger neglect. Thank you Xero for always future-proofing bookkeepers added value to clients!”

Nicole Lynch, Streamline Management (AU)

“My husband (a reformed accountant) doesn’t understand the excitement of find and recode, he said you’re tweeting about accounting software on holidays? I said its a game changer, this is the most exciting feature. Ever.”

Blake Oliver, Cloudsourced Accountants (US)

“Xero continues to impress with outstanding new features such as Find & Recode. My team loves working Xero because the app is built with both consumers and accountants in mind. Find & Recode will make it even easier for us to support our clients on Xero.”

Mel Dowie, MND Training Services (UK)

“The process to review and clean up a Xero file at the moment can take hours. With the new Find & Recode feature this is going to be a breeze! Less time consuming, less mind numbing and more enjoyable process to undertake.

“Sure I will be losing all the hours I could charge by doing it the old fashioned way but my clients didn’t value all the hours it took me to do the job, they only value the result.  So I will now be able to increase my profits and enjoy the process whilst still delivering value to my clients.”

Get more info

To learn more, check out our short Find & Recode Video on Xero U. There is a version available for:

We have released a number of other great enhancements today – take a look at Peter’s post on the release to see what else is new.

There’s also been heaps of great feedback on Twitter – check it out below!


April 20, 2015 at 10.52 am

One word: Hallelujah! This is going to make picking up new clients a breeze!

Sandra Hunter
April 20, 2015 at 10.56 am

Thank you Xero! So excited! So happy! This has made my day. I have already been finding and recoding hundreds of transactions that would normally take hours to change. I admit I have been storing up some jobs waiting for this day. 🙂

Gillian Rossouw
April 20, 2015 at 11.51 am

This is such a game changer and is going to assist bookkeepers who need to correct those pesky entries in bulk. Recently received a file for review which had been sent to a “quasi conversion company” every single line entry had GST code “BAS Excluded”. This feature will simply save hours of tedious corrections. Thank you Xero, you continue to push the envelope and deliver the most amazing features. There is no other software company who has managed to rollout this incrediable tool.

Jerry Zhao
April 20, 2015 at 12.47 pm

Love it!!!

Elizabeth Salter
April 20, 2015 at 4.37 pm

Love love love Find & Recode. Thanks, Xero!

Timothy Munro
April 20, 2015 at 5.13 pm

Fantastic – a HUGE well done to Xero for Find and Recode! Xero keeps leaving the others so far behind!

Mary-Clare Switz
April 20, 2015 at 5.26 pm

A slice of happiness @Xero!

April 21, 2015 at 9.09 am

A long overdue feature that seems to work flawlessly – and very flexible too. I’m going to get a lot of use out of this.

Mitch Uzelac
April 21, 2015 at 2.12 pm

As usual @Xero is leading the way ! A fantastic initiative that will assist us #connectedadvisor in our drive to add value to our clients #lovemywork #cloud

Janet Short
April 21, 2015 at 3.45 pm

Find & Recode – Absolutely fantastic feature, has just saved me hours, very happy. Well done xero

April 23, 2015 at 4.50 pm

Thank you!

Dianne Jewell
April 25, 2015 at 7.39 am

A bookkeepers dream come true #find and recode. If I can say one thing… still haven’t mastered the art of landing us back on the page we were working on, the one we started on. I wish we didn’t have to always land back on Transactions.

April 27, 2015 at 11.19 am

I have already used this feature extensively on a few clients, not just for recoding but for searching for transactions. Tip for accountants and book keepers doing GST reconciliations – easily find GST paid and refunded transactions by doing a search on the GST account. Will show all transactions (except manual journals, weirdly) coded directly to GST, but not the GST content of ordinary transactions (like the AT report does).

Michael Mori
April 29, 2015 at 8.53 pm

Absolutely outstanding. Bookkeeping will now be categorised into two time periods. BFM (before “find and Match”) and AFM.

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